A ST Dogmaels man is to be part of a team of trekkers from across Wales who will explore Vietnam and raise funds for Marie Curie.

The UK’s leading terminal illness charity is appealing for more adventurous individuals to take on the challenge of a lifetime, by trekking across the Southeast Asian country next autumn.

The trek will take place from October 24 to November 2, 2019, and will raise invaluable funds for Marie Curie in Wales.

The charity provides care and support across Wales to people living with a terminal illness, and their families, either in its hospice in Penarth or in people’s homes.

Last year, Marie Curie Nurses cared for more than 3,000 patients and their families across Wales, at a cost of more than £8 million a year.

There are already more than two dozen people from all over Wales signed up for the trek including Simon Wigley from St Dogmaels.

“I am inspired to go on the trek and raise funds for Marie Curie in memory of my parents who both received end of life care from the organisation,” said 56-year-old Simon, who works as a pharmacist at Crymych.

“We lost my mum Jean to cancer three years ago after 17 years of living with breast cancer.

“She needed full time care towards the end and along with NHS care also had Marie Curie nurses in attendance.

“We lost my dad Max this year of basically a broken heart, and I was surprised when I found out that Marie Curie nurses were able to help us towards the end as I have always associated their work with palliative cancer care.

“I had looked after dad for two years but really needed help towards the end - which was provided partly by NHS crisis team, but for us it was the assistance from Marie Curie that really helped dad and us.

“I am looking forward to this challenge to raise funding and awareness for Marie Curie’s fantastic work, but am also hoping to meet others who might have a shared experience.”

Dog lover Simon, who wants to raise £5,000, added that he hopes he isn’t tempted to bring home a stray dog.

As part of Simon’s fundraising he will be organising a comedy night in St Dogmaels Memorial Hall on Friday November 17 (7pm, over-18s). The event will feature a host of top-named comedians – Dan Thomas, Tanya-Lee Davis and Drew Taylor - from the international comedy circuit in what will be a first for St Dogmaels.

Tickets, priced £8, are available from St Dogmaels Premier Stores and Post Office or direct from Simon (07511 218384).

“It will be a tough trek , eight hours a day over seven days,” added Simon. “My target is £5,000 . If successful this night will be repeated with the same calibre of comedians in the new year and possibly a short comedy festival next summer in the village.”

Community fundraiser Chris Roberts said: “Our treks are always very popular, whether it’s with people looking to take on a new challenge in a beautiful country with stunning landscapes, or those whose family has been cared for at home and want to give something back.

“We hope the Vietnam trek will be one of the best treks yet – offering all those taking part the adventure of a lifetime while raising money for an important local cause.”

To find out more about the trek, visit mariecurie.org.uk/get-involved/charity-events/hospice-treks/vietnam-wales or contact community fundraiser Chris Roberts on 01554 759071 or chris.roberts@mariecurie.org.uk